'Prepare to be immersed in the heat and vibrancy of Florida's natural world, full of such sensual detail that to read it is to breathe it in.' -Jo Shapcott [review of Greyhound Night Service]

At Lughnasadh

With the first harvest festival time of year, Lughnasadh, just kicking off, I've been listening to some smooth Kate Bush tunes and reading some poetry with a sizzle... I just came across this poem by a poet I'd not heard of before, and surprisingly (it's such a small world) once I did a bit of research, I found out she's a colleague of another American poet I like very much.

Returning Madame Bovary

At the bookstore counter, I am waiting
on a cashier who won’t take my return
without managerial approval, to be granted by Bill,
who is on managerial break,
and I wonder, what if,
what if I lean across this counter, scattering
the blue and black ink pens,
the red-foiled chocolates,
and grab his narrow necktie,
choke him slightly, pull
his pocked face to mine and kiss him,
pushing my tongue into his mouth,
while sliding my hand down the front
of his flat-front khakis to his crotch,
then would I get what I want?
After all, isn’t that what we all want:
to be pursued with single-minded urgency?
To have customers, lovers, readers
who are like the man who’s been sitting in prison
for ten years with only his mother and blonde cousin for visitors?
To have him reach through the bars
to what’s past them—
to the female prison guard who lingers,
studies her nails, counts floor tiles,
like she’s waiting for something
more than the end of her shift?

Katie Chaple